In 2010 Katie Finneran famously won her second Tony for her hilarious turn as the floozy Marge MacDougall in the revival of Promises, Promises, and announced in her acceptance speech that she was engaged to Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson star Darren Goldstein. What she didn’t say was that at that time they were also expecting their first child. Six years and two kids later, they are splitting their time between Miami, where Finneran films Netflix’s Florida Keys-family murder mystery Bloodline, and New York where Goldstein stars in Showtime’s romantic thriller The Affair.
The actors met in 2008 in Williamstown Festival and Bay Street Theatre co-production of the Christopher Durang play Beyond Therapy and started dating after sparks flew and exchanging “sexy banter.” Now that they are both on successful, extremely addictive TV shows—The Affair’s third season begins in November and Bloodline’s third season will premiere in 2017—life has really changed around the Finneran/Goldstein household. Or has it?
What did you appreciate about each other when you met in rehearsals for Beyond Therapy? Darren was Katie cracking jokes then?
DG: To be perfectly honest the second I met her I was like, “Oh that’s Katie Finneran,” and so I was taken with that.
KF: I so didn’t know that.
DG: I knew she was a great theatre actress, and I knew she gave this great performance in Noises Off. I was really excited just to work with her. I was like, “Oh I’m working with a Tony winner,” and then she was also gorgeous. We had an instant chemistry. I can’t really explain it it’s just chemistry. Everyone knows it who has it. It felt like deep down we were looking for the other person right at that time. Even though I didn’t think I was looking for it, I think deep down I actually was. If you can understand that.
KF: When I first saw him, it really was shocking in the sense that he walked across the room, and I thought, “Oh there he is.” It was lightning bolt-ish, but I had more of a sense of calm. I feel like I know him as well today as I did that day. My favorite thing about him was that he was always very straightforward. He would come over and say, “You’re having lunch with me today and nobody else is invited.” It was the sexiest thing.
You both started hit TV shows around the same time. Is there a difference to being a TV couple as opposed to being a theatre couple?
Katie Finneran: Yes. We treat each other completely differently. Now, if he sees me around the corner in our small apartment, he has to bow and I have to curtsy. Our lives have changed enormously!
Darren Goldstein: If we do movies we’re going to have to bump it up.
KF: We’ll start wearing crowns and bowing. No. He’s always cooked for me, and he continues to cook for me. I play with the kids on the floor. Nothing has changed. Nothing whatsoever, except we can probably afford college for the kids at this point. If I did some voiceovers then maybe some books.
DG: Katie and I always say that we only want to have enough money to be able to buy whatever we want on Amazon Prime. We don’t need houses. We don’t need jets. We are Amazon Prime junkies.
KF: It’s terrible. And I don’t know why we just gave them an advertisement. They can’t send us anything free.
DG: Yeah they can.
KF: Our first dream was to be able to buy whatever we wanted at the grocery store—whatever we wanted at Whole Foods.
Your Whole Foods and Amazon Prime dreams must have really started coming true after 2010 when Katie won her second Tony Award for Promises, Promises, Darren starred in Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson and you got married and pregnant! Katie what was the best part? Getting married or winning a Tony?
KF: Getting married or the Tony? Getting married, of course! I already had a Tony—I’m kidding that was a joke. Look, I’m not going to lie, [winning the Tony] was really great because it made me feel like I can get a job doing a play pretty much anywhere. I could do Medea in Pougkeepsie. The Tony allows me to do that. And when I die it will say Tony-Award winner Katie Finneran. What Darren? Why are you laughing at me? What’s so funny?
DG: I’ve heard you make that joke before.
KF: Look, I told him that he was going to hear me repeat some jokes, and it’s just too bad. Who doesn’t repeat jokes? Delia Ephron said she uses her same jokes over and over again and Jerry [Kass] was fine with it. Darren thinks I should have fresh material every time I leave this house. He sets the bar very high. Anyway, I would definitely say getting married, although after this conversation I’m not so sure. I waited a long time to get married. I really wanted to make sure I found the right person. I was so happy when I finally did. My ultimate goal is to try and find a way to be happy every day. It doesn’t always work out, but that’s my goal.
DG: Would you believe that the day after we got engaged she found out she was pregnant?
I had assumed that you found out you were pregnant, then got engaged!
KF: Everybody thinks that! Everybody can think that if they want, but we found out the next day, which was bizarre! My best friend Andréa Burns, who is in On Your Feet! right now, had brought this sweet bag of ridiculous bridesmaids-y things [to the stage door at Promises, Promises] the day after we got engaged. We’ve known each other since we were 14, and neither of us has ever been very “bridesmaids-y,” but she was just so happy that I had found somebody. She had put bridal magazines in there and also a pregnancy test. I thought that was so funny, and that’s why I took a pregnancy test.
But you had no idea at that point?
KF: Isn’t that crazy? We had been trying, because I was 40, so we were checking on my blood and all that kind of stuff just to see how everything was going. We had talked about it, and we both wanted children, but we had friends who had taken years to get pregnant, so I was just goofing around. When I came out [from the bathroom] I was stunned.
DG: We have ten minutes after we found out that she was pregnant on video.
KF: His brother lives in the building, so we invited him down and told him.
DG: Then he videotaped us talking about it. It’s really trippy to go back and watch it.
Now you have two kids! How do you balance filming successful TV shows with kids and family? Do you feel like you’re really good at it or is it a constant struggle?
DG: Both. I think we’re good about it, but you always have to be on top of it. There is a lot of planning involved. Family always comes first.
KF: Darren was so extraordinary during the first season of Bloodline. I wasn’t a series regular, and I had to go back and forth [to Florida] whenever they needed me. They would say they needed me for three days, and I would wind up being there for 11, so during the second season when I was a regular, I stopped Darren as we were walking down the street and said, “I can’t do this. I miss our kids too much. I can’t be without them.” He was like, “Okay, you got it. We’ll all move down to Miami, and I’ll just come back and forth for work, so the kids can be with you. We’ll build a home down there, and we’ll work it out.”
DG: We’re going back down in a few weeks. Last year we lived in Miami from August to mid-May and I would go back and forth as I needed to.
That’s so sweet Darren! Are you addicted to each other’s shows? Because I am!
KF: Completely. We have a really supportive professional relationship. We’ve never had an iota or jealousy and we just feel like each other’s triumph is our triumph.